Force of the Wind: Clear Vinyl LPMRBLP262CL
Label: Mr Bongo
Release Date: 28th October
How can it be autumn, spring and summer in one record? Usually when it's inspired by the jazz funk of Brazil, which has always had an oddly pastoral flavour especially when digested in crisp air and crispy leaved Britain in October. SOYUZ or COIO3 (or translated Union) are a Belarusian outfit who embody that clear sky warmth of Verocia, Lô Borges, Milton Nascimento et al but with a European jazz pop charm.
The headline is that THIS ALBUM IS INCREDIBLE, one of the best psych jazz orchestral funk records we've heard all year that warms our cockles at a time when we're scrabbling for alternative heating methods.
For those who dig: soft psychedelic jazz funk, 60s-70s Euro pop and Música Popular Brasileira. Soundcarriers, Vanishing Twin, Morgan Delt, Dungen, Maston, L'eclair...
Some records just stop you in your tracks, they resonate with you and feel instantly familiar like an old friend, even on the first listen SOYUZ's third album 'Force of the Wind' is one of those records
It holds all the trademarks, beauty, and eccentricities of classic Brazilian recordings, from the 60s and 70s, that we have come to love. Think artists such as Milton Nascimento, Lô Borges, Burnier e Cartier, Arthur Verocai et al. But this record wasn't made in Brazil and is in fact a brand-new release.
SOYUZ (which translates as 'union') is a creative collective from Minsk, Belarus, led by composer, arranger, and singer, Alex Chumak, multi-instrumentalist, Mikita Arlou, and drummer, Anton Nemahai. SOYUZ's previous albums explored and reimagined the legacy of jazz-oriented, non-English-language pop music of the 20th century.
For their third album, there is a stronger focus, and it is influenced by 70s Música popular Brasileira and building bridges from it to present-day Belarus. Alex notes that from the moment he first encountered Brazilian music, he found in it a kind of concentrated emotion that felt as if it were familiar to him from his childhood. This non- verbal emotion and connection between the listener and musician echoes in the music, regardless of understanding of the language the album is recorded in.